As the nation observes National Children’s Month, we ask this question: Are children safe under the Duterte administration?
Since the administration launched a brutal war against illegal drugs, the dozens of children killed and others caught in the chain of daily violence serve as testament that minors are among those who bear the brunt of the campaign.
The death of Kian delos Santos, Carl Angelo Arnaiz, and Reynaldo de Guzman show that everyone could be the target of Duterte’s drug war, no matter how young.
Many children have also been left behind, orphaned, without a breadwinner. Those who have witnessed the killing of their loved ones suffer from shock and trauma from the emotionally disturbing experience.
In a June 2017 post, the Philippine Statistics Authority said that among the nine basic sectors, farmers, fishermen and children belonging to families with income below the official poverty threshold or poor families posted the highest poverty incidences in 2015 at 34.3%, 34.0% and 31.4%, respectively.
Despite the quarterly growth rates, not all sectors, including children, feel the benefit of growth.
As leaders of this nation, we are tasked to ensure that every Filipino child has a safe and loving home; food on the table and clean water; education and health services; equal opportunities for advancement. This is our duty to each and every Filipino child.